Vanuatu

Rodents are a key pest to agricultural and rural island communities of the South Pacific, but there is limited information of their impact on the crops and livelihoods of small-scale farmers.

Rodents are a key pest to agricultural and rural island communities of the South Pacific, but there is limited information of their impact on the crops and livelihoods of small-scale farmers. The rodent pest community is known, but the type and scales of damage to different crops on different islands are unknown. Knowledge about rodent pest management in other geographical regions may not be directly transferable to the Pacific region. Many studies on islands have largely focussed on the eradication of rodents from uninhabited islands for conservation benefits.

Vatthe the largest Conservation Area, and the most extensive lowland alluvial forest left in Vanuatu, is under threat from an invasive vine, big leaf (Merremia peltata), which is causing the death of large numbers of canopy trees.

The purpose of this report is to provide an overview of the various frameworks and initiatives that exist in the Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs) with regards to invasive species management and how they could be utilised towards the development of a coordinated mechanism by the countries in the Melanesian region in addressing biosecurity and invasive species concerns. The terms of reference for this report can be seen in Annex 1.

The Vanuatu Government has, with support from JICA, initiated a project to refurbish an expland Lapetasi Wharf in Port Vila (Port Vila Lapetasi International Multi-Purpose Wharf). The aim is to increase the country's capacity to deal with international freight and cruise ship tourism. The development entails construction of a new multi-purpose wharf facility of ~200m that is capable of berthing two large vessels at the same time.